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Trust in Digital Services

Welcome to the research group Trust in Digital Services at TU Berlin. The research group is headed by Prof. Dr. Timm Teubner. It was founded in April 2018 and is part of the Einstein Center Digital Future.

Ministers call for reputation portability


November 24th, 2020

Germany's Federal Ministers of Justice and Labor, respectively, have taken a stance to strengthen the rights of self‑employed complementors vis-à-vis online platform operators. In a guest contribution to Wirtschaftswoche, they call for more protective rights and fair working conditions as well as transparency and fairness of online rating systems. Most importantly, they support the concept of reputation portability, that is, the ability to port ratings from one platform to another to strengthen competition between platforms and individuals' freedom of choice – a subject that our research group has conducted extensive work on in the past.

Best Paper Nomination


November 23rd, 2020

We are happy to announce that our ICIS paper has been awarded the prize for "Best Short Paper" in the Sharing Economy, Platforms and Crowds track and is nominated for the overall conference's Best Paper Award. The paper is joint work with Otto Lutz, Marc T. P. Adam, and Timm Teubner.

Highly Commended Paper


November 23rd, 2020

We are happy to announce that our systematic literature review on Airbnb has been awarded the prize for Emerald's Literati Award as a "Highly Commended Paper". The paper is joint work David Dann and Christof Weinhardt.

Participation at ICIS 2020


September 25th, 2020

We are happy to announce that our research group will be present at the International Conference on Information Systems 2020 in India, virtually. Maik Hesse will share his research insights on how signal discrepancy affects purchase intentions and cognition within the online platform economy. This paper is joint work with Otto Lutz, Marc T. P. Adam, and Timm Teubner.

Trust in Artificial Intelligence


September 14th, 2020

We are happy to announce that our joint paper (with Felix Biessmann (ECDF) and Philipp Schmidt (Amazon Research)) on Trust in Artificial Intelligence has appeared in the Journal of Decision Systems. The paper is available here.

Welcome to the team, Teo Firpo!


July 1st, 2020

Teo is a doctoral student and a project lead on ECDF’s collaboration with the Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) in Tunisia. Teo is an economist by background, with a special interest in experimental methods applied to innovation policy. He holds a master’s degree in Economics and Public Policy from Sciences Po Paris, as well as a PgCert in Econometrics from Birkbeck University of London. Prior to joining the team, Teo worked for five years for the Innovation Growth Lab at Nesta, the UK’s innovation foundation.

Welcome to the team, Ines Amri!


June 15th, 2020

Ines joined the TDS research team as a doctoral student and project lead on ECDF’s collaboration with the Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ). Her research will focus on digital economic development in Tunisia. Ines holds an Executive Master of Business Administration (MBA) from ESMT Berlin and accomplished an advanced studies degree in English Literature at Manouba University, Tunisia.

ECIS 2020


May 19th, 2020

As part of our ongoing research on reputation portability, we have successfully submitted a Research-in-Progress Paper to this year's instance of the European Conference of Information System (ECIS 2020). In this work, we leverage a multi-method approach to assess the benefits of porting online reputation across platform boundaries. Due to the COVID-19 travel restrictions, this year's paper presentations – which were supposed to take place in Marrakech (Morocco) – will be hosted as a virtual event in June. The article can be found here.

"Only one room left!" - New paper on hospitality platforms


March 20th, 2020

In a recent study, BCCP Fellow Prof. Timm Teubner and co-author assistant professor Antje Graul study scarcity cues on Airbnb and Booking.com and show that these increase bookings through urgency and value effects.

The study "Only one room left! How scarcity cues affect booking intentions on hospitality platforms" was published in Electronic Commerce Research and Applications.

Welcome to the team, Tobias Menzel!


February 3rd, 2020

Tobias joined the TDS research team as a doctoral student. His research will focus on Green Energy Platform Economics with an emphasis on trust and reputation. Tobias graduated in Industrial Engineering and Management at Karlsruhe Institute for Technology (KIT) and accomplished a master’s degree in Economics at Humboldt-University Berlin.

“I am very excited to join Prof. Teubner and the TDS Team to research the transformation of our energy sector: In order to reach the climate goals, the sector needs to be decarbonized, digitized and decentralized within a very ambitious timeframe. I am looking forward to contribute to the academic discourse in this area, building on more than 4 years of strategic management consulting at Kearney.

HICSS 2020


January 15th, 2020

Last Friday on the beautiful Hawaiian island of Maui, we presented our most recent research on trust, reputation portability, and social interaction in the platform economy. The Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS) is the longest-standing conference in the field of IS & technology and the No. 1 IS conference by number of citations on Google Scholar. Both articles can be found here (Trust & Social Interaction) and here (Reputation Portability).

ECDF and GIZ partner for a Digital Africa


January 8th, 2020

As part of a special initiative of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, the Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and the Einstein Center Digital Future (ECDF) partner for a pan-African network of digital centers; physical nodes that will promote the digital participation of the civil society. Prof. Teubner and his team will be responsible for accompanying research in this project with a special country focus on Tunisia. Read more

ICIS 2019 in Munich


December 16th, 2019

In the beautiful city of Munich, we had the privelege to present a paper at the AIS' top-tier International Conference on Information Systems (ICIS). On that occassion, we presented our recent paper on visual cues in the context of equity crowdfunding. Besides the extraordinary keynote speakers, among others Prof. Dr. h. c. mult. Hasso Plattner (SAP), we were honoured that our paper was nominated for the Best Short Paper Award.

Research Stay at Newcastle


December 12th, 2019

In December, Prof. Teubner headed out for a research at the University of Newcastle (Australia), hosted by our group's long-time research partner Professor Marc T. P. Adam. In the beautiful town of Newcastle, we have been working on a variety on projects, including user photos, avatars, and nature imagery in electronic commerce.

oxford.berlin collaboration kicked off


November 13th, 2019

Recently, the TDS research group participated in joint discussions with Prof. Vili Lehdonvirta and Dr. Fabian Braesemann from the Oxford Internet Institute (OII). On that occasion, we presented our latest research on trust signals and social interaction during the OII’s platform economy seminar. The oxford.berlin collaboration will soon introduce new offerings for TU Berlin and University of Oxford students. More information will be made available shortly – stay tuned!

Research Ethics Board inaugurated


October 30th, 2019

Today, our faculty's Research Ethics Board (REB) was inaugurated and will be chaired by Prof. Katrin Talke. Prof. Teubner and five other members of our faculty are respectfully looking forward to the upcoming exciting work and associated responsibility.

Unlocking online reputation


October 25th, 2019

We are happy to announce that our research on the transferability of online reputation — and the boundary conditions for actually making it work — has appeared in Business & Information Systems Engineering (BISE). Please find the online-first version of the paper here.

Data Science Case Studies 2019/20


October 24th, 2019

This semester's Data Science Toolbox lecture will be accompanied by case studies from several of our partners from academia and industry. We are happy to announce that Accenture, the University of Oxford, Dilecy, Ekipa, DeloitteStiftung, and D21 will contribute to make this an exciting and insightful course.

Data Portability Round Tables


September 18th, 2019

Stiftung Datenschutz is currently holding a series of round table talks on the practical challenges and solutions in implementing data portability. In these talks, Prof. Teubner and representatives of Google, Facebook, polypoly.eu, onecub.fr, and the Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection are discussing topics such as goals, requirements, key principles, and implications of data portability.

Reputation Portability — quo vadis?


September 16th, 2019

With many of today's online activities, we gather digital reputation. Be it on social and professional networks or on sharing economy platforms. However, as of today, there is no easy way to leverage this reputation across platform boundaries. In this just published paper in Electronic Markets, we explore the state-of-the-art on reputation portability within digital platform ecosystems.

Book Chapters on the Sharing Economy


September 9th, 2019

We are happy to announce that two book chapters on the sharing economy, co-authored by Prof. Teubner have appeared. These works are the result of long-standing and ongoing collaborations with Florian Glaser, Antje Graul, and Mareike Möhlmann. The chapters deal with the dynamics of online ratings and the history of trust and reputation and can be found here and here.

Literati Reviewer Award


September 1st, 2019

Publishing is one thing, peer-reviewing academic research is quite another. We are happy to announce that publisher Emerald awarded Professor Teubner's services as a reviewer with the Literati Award for Excellence.

Dilecy goes after companies for you


August 20th, 2019

If you always wanted to know who collects your data and which, Berlin-based startup Dilecy may have an answer for you. Being awarded with the Berlin Startup Scholarship, the team of currently three founders is working on their business idea of data sovereignty at the Centre for Entrepreneurship. Prof. Teubner is happy to serve as their mentor.

AMCIS 2019 in Cancún


August 17th, 2019

This year's AMCIS in Cancún has not been like any other. This very particular conference for IS/IT academicians had its 25th birthday. Dr. Kareem Alsudais presented our joint article on large-scale text sentiment analysis (based on Airbnb listing data).

Assistant Professor Margaret Hall on a visit to TDS


July 5th, 2019

Recently, we were happy to welcome Magie Hall from University of Nebraska at Omaha and her students with us at ECDF. Prof. Teubner gave a lecture on "The future of digital platforms" for the visiting students. Find more about Magie's work here.

IWSE 2019 in Utrecht


July 1st, 2019

After successful editions in Utrecht, Paris, Southampton, Lund, and Mannheim, the 6th International Workshop on the Sharing Economy (IWSE) was held in Utrecht once again. Over 110 participants from 23 countries joined this year’s conference to exchange their research and insights on the sharing economy. Prof. Teubner shared his thoughts on “Platforms, Trust, and what may come” as a keynote address within the university’s venerable Academiegebouw.

Inside Crowdfunding: Guest talk by Robert Kunz


June 27th, 2019

After his studies of Entrepreneurship and Innovation at the University of Potsdam, our guest speaker Robert Kunz worked for several years for the Berlin-based crowdfunding platform, Companisto. Most recently, as Head of Investment, he was responsible for the selection of capital-seeking start-ups. In his talk he tells our students of the Platform Economics course about the functioning and obstacles of crowdfunding.

Inside EyeEm: Guest talk by Gen Sadakane


June 27th, 2019

Despite, or maybe thanks to, his successful career in renowned marketing agencies, Gen Sadakane co-founded the photo platform EyeEm eight years ago together with three of his friends, which matches companies with top-class amateur photographers; in his function as Creative Director he tells our students about the history and evolution of the platform business model.

Research Exchange at WU Wien


June 4th, 2019

Vienna is always worth a visit! We followed Prof. Ben Greiner's invitation for a research visit in early June, exchanging thoughts about the use of user profile photos and avatars in electronic commerce and online platforms.

WI 2020 in Potsdam


May 21st, 2019

WI2020 offers a forum for the exchange between science and practice and contributes to the development of solutions for the age of digitization. We are happy to announce that, jointly with Prof. Dr. Manuel Trenz and Dr. Marc T. P. Adam, we will chair a track on Platforms and the Sharing Economy within WI2020.



April, 16th, 2019

The sharing economy faces an image problem: When values such as cooperation and sustainability are claimed by profit-oriented platforms, consumers get confused and lose faith in the platforms' integrity. With our work on the phenomenon of sharewashing, we were the first to have documented this effect empirically. For further information, feel free to listen into (our co-author) Christof's interview with Deutschlandfunk.

Expert Commission appointed

April 5th, 2019

Dr. Franziska Giffey (federal minister for family affairs) has appointed the expert commission for the Third Equality Report. The commission will deal with questions of how digitization may help to promote equal opportunities across demographic features. More information

Data Science with a view

April 4th, 2019

The hard work eventually paid off for the winning groups of this semester's Data Science Toolbox lecture. Supporting the course's case study along the semester, Accenture was kind enough to invite our students to SOLAR bar to meet and talk casually over classy drinks.

Show me the stars!

March 29th, 2019

We are happy to announce that our catchword paper on Reputation Transfer has appeared in Business & Information Systems Engineering (BISE). Today, users manage reputation on an increasing number of platforms which introduces at least two challenges. First, the platforms operate as silos, creating friction and inefficiency. Second, due to the existence of network effects, there exists a natural tendency for few platforms to grow large, acquire overwhelming market power, and hence to impede competition. Notwithstanding challenges relating to data ownership, reputation transfer may be an important factor to meet both challenges.

Privacy in the Sharing Economy

March 26th, 2019

We are happy to announce that our paper on Privacy in the Sharing Economy has appeared in the Journal of the Association for Information Systems.

We explore how marketing personal resources online is inherently associated with the disclosure of personal and sometimes intimate information. This raises unprecedented questions of privacy. Yet, there is so far little research on the role of privacy considerations in the sharing economy. We investigate how privacy concerns and economic prospects shape a potential provider's intentions to share via different communication channels and relate privacy concerns back to the provider's perceptions of the audience.

Interim Evaluation @ECDF

March 26th, 2019

For the interim evaluation of our cross-university Einstein Center Digital Future (ECDF), a renowned board of international scientists followed Einstein Foundation's invitation to Berlin. Since its opening in April 2017, until today, 27 reseachers from various disciplines are working on timely questions of digitization, including the fields of IT security, intelligent water supply, medical data processing, or digitalization processes within the work place and education. The expert panel was particularly impressed by the tangible interdisciplinary cooperation among ECDF's members. The center is based on a public-private partnership model, backed by more than 30 industry partners and organizations and hosts reseachers from all of Berlin's major universities (TU, HU, FU, UdK, Charité, HTW, BHfT).

Welcome to the Team, Maik Hesse!

March 13th, 2019

In March, Maik Hesse joined the TDS research team as a Doctoral Candidate. In his research he will focus on Trust and Reputation in Digital Platform Ecosystems. Maik has received a diploma in Mathematics and Business Administration from the University of Cologne and graduate studies in the United States (California State University)

"Prior to joining the TDS team, I worked for 4 years as a consultant for strategy&. I plan to leverage my experience in digital strategy, transformation, and tech venture building in the dissertation process."

Business & Information Systems Engineering

March 1st, 2019

Dr. Teubner has joined the editorial board of Business & Information Systems Engineering (BISE) in the department Economics of Information Systems. Being the German-language IS community's flagship journal for 60 years, BISE has emerged as one of today’s leading European journals in the field.

Final Presentation Day (Data Science Toolbox)

February 7th, 2019

Things got serious for students of our Data Science Toolbox course on Thursday at ECDF. After weeks of preparation, nine teams presented their results on the topic of data-driven decision-making for a better future. The case studies included the creation of a prototype, drawing on the Boston open data initiative for supporting business and public leaders in the areas of financial services, public services, and sustainability.

Sponsored by Accenture Strategy, three outstanding teams were awarded with all-in invitations for a get-together at Solar Bar & Restaurant, taking place in April.

Lecture on "Digital Platforms in E-Commerce"

February 5th, 2019

As part of the weekly lecture series Digital Future, Prof. Teubner will give a talk on Digital Platforms in Electronic Commerce (February 5th, 4-6 pm, Room A151).

The lecture series invites students of all levels to get an understanding of various aspects connected to the digital transformation. It thus contributes to a more interdisciplinary education at TUB. There are no participation requirements.


Inaugural Lectures

January 25th, 2019

Prof. Dr. Thomas Volling (Production and Operations Management) and Prof. Dr. Timm Teubner (Trust in Digital Services) held their inaugural lectures at TUB. The event was followed by a cocktail reception at TU's iconic Geodätenstand.

Industry Talk by Dr. Florian Teschner (HAVAS)

January 24th, 2019

We were happy to host Dr. Florian Teschner as a guest speaker for our course Data Science Toolbox. In his talk, Dr. Teschner explored the intricacies of data-based online advertisement. Since 2017, Dr. Teschner works as head of Data Business Inteligence (DBi), Havas’ global digital analytics and marketing technology consultancy.

Airbnb Literature Review

January 15th, 2019

A growing body of research from various domains has investigated the platform Airbnb, a two-sided market for peer-based accommodation sharing. We set out from the idea that it is due time to take a step back and assess the current state of affairs.

We are happy to announce that our comprehensive review article on Airbnb has eventually appeared, aiming to conflate and synthesize research on Airbnb. Moreover, a growing online repository on Airbnb-related research is now available.

Research Talk by Prof. Dr. Felix Biessmann (Data Science)

January 10th, 2019

We were very excited to welcome Prof. Dr. Felix Biessmann for a research talk in the Data Science Toolbox course. Prof. Biessmann holds a professorship for Data Science at Beuth University of Applied Sciences and at the Einstein Center Digital Future. Being a former PhD candidate at TUB, Prof. Biessmann talked to our students about Machine Learning Systems in Production: Data Quality and Interpretability.

Welcome to the Team, Florence Klement!

January 1st, 2019

Florence Klement joined the TDS research team as a Doctoral Candidate with a focus on Trust in Crowdinvesting. Florence obtained a dual master’s degree in Industrial Engineering and Management from TU Berlin and Toulouse Business School.

"Having worked as Head of Investor Relations at the platform service provider Companisto in Berlin-Kreuzberg, I am very excited to bringing in my expertise in Equity Crowdfunding."

BCCP Special Focus: Privacy

December 17th, 2018

Personal data protection has surged to the center of the policy debate, leading to the introduction of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Several BCCP Fellows analyzed the issue of data privacy from different angles. Have a look what Timm Teubner (TU Berlin), Christoph M. Flath (University of Würzburg), and other scholars have to say about privacy in the sharing economy, privacy-preserving data analysis, and the price of privacy here.


Paper Presentation at ICIS 2018

December 13th, 2018

During this year's International Conference on Information Systems (ICIS) in San Francisco, Christian Peukert presented one of our recent research project on the effects of Foreign Live Bio Feedback on human decision making, particularly when it comes to trust.

Peukert, C., Adam, M. T. P., Hawlitschek, F., Helmig, S., Lux, E., Teubner, T. (2018). Knowing me, knowing you: Biosignals and trust in the surveillance economy. In ICIS 2018 Proceedings, pp. 1–9. online

Pairing Research Talks during the Berlin Science Week

November 1st, 2018

What creates trust in online platforms? What is the economic value of online reputation? How can reputation be transferred from one platform to another? These questions were raised by Prof. Dr. Teubner at the Pairing Research Talks during the Berlin Science Week. The interdisciplinary format brings together young scientists whose topics have nothing in common at first glance. more


Hidden peer-to-peer network structures

September 19th, 2018

We are happy to announce that our paper on the hidden peer-to-peer network structures within accommodation sharing was accepted at the Journal of Systems and Information Technology.

The paper provides first insights into the very fabric of host-guest interactions on Airbnb from a macroscopic perspective. We discuss how the platform's network topology may be leveraged as a resource for trust-building and how platform operators may use network analyses to gain deeper insights into their user base.

How Platforms Design for Trust

September 10th, 2018

As part of a recent book publication, Prof. Teubner co-authored a chapter about trust design in the platform economy with Prof. Greiner (WU Vienna) and Prof. Weinhardt (Karlsruhe Institute of Technology). The publication is available in German.

Greiner, B., Teubner, T., Weinhardt, C. (2018). Grundfragen der Plattformökonomie – Wie man Vertrauen designt. In: Plattformen—Geschäftsmodelle und Verträge; Blaurock, U., Schmidt-Kessel, M., Erler, K. (eds.), Nomos, pp. 59–76. online


shareBW Landeskongress in Karlsruhe

July 4th, 2018

Digitization represents one of the sharing economy's most important drivers. About 200 participants discussed questions around economic sustainability of sharing schemes with experts at the shareBW Landeskongress, including keynote speeches, panels, and best practice presentations. Prof. Teubner and Dr. Hawlitschek served as anchormen for two of the scientific tracks at the congress.

Guest Lecture by Max F. Kunz

July 2nd, 2018

In today’s Platform Economics lecture,  Max Ferdinand Kunz (Co-founder of InStaff & Jobs GmbH) held a talk on Job-Matching as a Platform: InStaff & Jobs, introducing the topic of search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine advertising (SEA).

IWSE 2018 in Mannheim

June 28th, 2018

More than 50 papers and projects have been presented at the 5th International Workshop on the Sharing Economy (IWSE) in Mannheim. Along with researchers from 15 countries, Prof. Teubner talked about our group's recent work on the sharing- and platform economy. More Information

Paper Presentation at ECIS 2018

June 23rd, 2018

During this year's European Conference on Information Systems (ECIS) in Portsmouth (UK), Prof. Teubner presented his research paper on the dynamics of star rating scores on Airbnb. ECIS 2018 ("Beyond Digitization – Facets of Socio-Technical Change") represents an excellent meeting place for scientists to discuss human and technical aspects of Information Systems (IS).

Teubner, T., Glaser, F. (2018). Up or out – The dynamics of star rating scores on Airbnb. In: ECIS 2018 Proceedings, pp. 1-13 online

The Economics of Peer-to-Peer Online Sharing

April 22nd, 2018

Which challenges and opportunities are linked to the collaborative consumption in the sharing economy? This is the question that Prof. Teubner addresses in his recent book chapter publication.

Teubner, T., Hawlitschek, F. (2018). The economics of peer-to-peer online sharing. In The Rise of the Sharing Economy: Exploring the Challenges and Opportunities of Collaborative Consumption; Pia Albinsson, Yasanthi Perera (eds.). Praeger Publishing, pp. 129–156. online

Trust in Digital Services @TU Berlin

April 1st, 2018

The Einstein Center Digital Future (ECDF) is growing and diversifying: Just in time for the upcoming summer semester, new professors have accepted their appointment to ECDF. Prof. Dr. Timm Teubner heads the Trust in Digital Services group at Faculty VII (Economics and Management) at TU Berlin. More information.

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